Through the rafting expedition of Oliver Cassidy, Franklin tells the remarkable story of Australia’s most significant environmental protest, the Franklin Blockade. We spoke with Cassidy and producer Chris Kamen to learn more about the thinking behind the film.
Oliver is an 8th-generation Tasmanian, activist, filmmaker, musician and transgender person. He has had a wide ranging career in the arts, beginning in Australia’a longest running play The Ship That Never Was, before moving to Queensland to study film. His short film Lola The Magnificent won several awards including Best Film at the QNFA in 2010. Oliver also won Best music Video at the inaugural Online Video Awards for Phantom Hitmen’s Beautiful Mind - a first of its kind made using the principles of Lean Filmmaking. He began researching the story of the Franklin campaign after the early passing of his father Mike, who in 1983 rafted the river to join the blockade and was arrested the week before Oliver was born. Oliver freelanced in film and TV production in Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Melbourne before Franklin drew him back to Tasmania, where he took up a thematically related job at the Tasmanian Conservation Trust.